Follow TV Tropes


Characters / Death in Paradise

Go To

    open/close all folders 

Current Characters

     Detective Inspector Jack Mooney
Played by Ardal O'Hanlon

A London Met detective who assisted the Honoré team when they came to England to investigate a murder. After the case, he goes to Saint Marie for a holiday with his daughter but ends up taking up DI Goodman's position when Humphrey decides to stay in London.

  • Cloud Cuckoolander: He comes across as being easily distracted by tangential matters and lax with the rules, but these traits always end up playing a vital role in catching each episode's killer.
  • Determinator: His instinct to solve cases overrides nearly everything else, to the point where he'll jump off a ferry and swim back to shore in order to make his summation.
  • Determined Widower: His wife passed away just a month before he's introduced on the show but he refuses to let others feel sorry for him and puts up a cheerful front. He takes the Honoré job because it presents him with the opportunity to take a step away from London and all the locations he associates with his wife.
  • Like a Duck Takes to Water: Unlike his predecessors, Jack completely throws himself into life on Saint Marie and quickly establishes an extensive network of local friends.
  • Loophole Abuse: He sets up a regular get-together at his shack where locals can enjoy a beer while crab racing and placing friendly wagers (a popular local pasttime) to get around rules about gambling at bars.
  • Oireland: Pointedly averted on his first appearance: he's an Irishman who can't stand Guinness.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: When Jack goes to interview some suspects again for the second time, he has a habit of either starting a "Shaggy Dog" Story tangent or pretending to look for a reminder about what he needed to ask before he starts to question them seriously.
  • Sweet Tooth: He puts at least six sugars in his tea.

     Detective Sergeant Madeleine Dumas 
Played by Aude Legastelois

     Officer J.P. Hooper
Played by Tobi Bakare
  • Establishing Character Moment: In his first scene, J.P. is early and decides to water the flowers growing outside the station. He's holding onto a watering can when he meets Humphrey for the first time, and doesn't realise he's pouring water all over Humphrey's shoes until the latter points it out.
  • The Ditz: In his debut episode, he's shown to accidentally pour water over Humphrey's shoes, and almost has a repeat situation later in the episode. He also follows Dwayne's instructions to a T, and bags everything from the murder victim's hotel room.
  • Fourth Date Marriage: He and his wife Rosie have a "whirlwind romance" (Dwayne's words), with him proposing not long after they began dating.
  • New Meat: In his first few episodes, Dwayne takes advantage of his naivete while showing him the finer points of police work. By the end of series 4, J.P. has settled in enough to know when Dwayne is taking advantage of him.
  • Odd Couple: With Dwayne. This is particularly emphasised in the final episode of series 4, when J.P. is not happy with Dwayne's more relaxed methods, and insists on performing a stakeout alone.
  • Only Known by Initials: J.P.'s full name is Jean-Pierre.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: J.P. can't swim and becomes nervous whenever he has to work on cases involving large bodies of water. Lampshaded by Dwayne, who reminds him that they are on an island in the middle of the Caribbean. At the end of the episode, however, Florence is shown to be teaching J.P. how to swim; and by series 6, he has no problem with swimming anymore.

    Officer Ruby Patterson
Played by Shyko Amos

A rookie officer who joins the Honoré team straight out of training. She happens to be the niece of Commissioner Selwyn Patterson.

  • Genki Girl: Ruby is very energetic, as seen in her Establishing Character Moment when she furiously shakes J.P.'s hand. She even cheerfully applauds Jack when she witnesses his first summation.
  • Jack-of-All-Trades: Ruby had worked in 12 other jobs in the past before becoming a police officer. The knowledge she picked up from her previous jobs has been handy quite a few times, like when she was able to identify a suspect's fingernail colour accurately, or when she was able to distinguish whether a designer watch was real or fake.
  • New Meat: Completely inexperienced and over-enthusiastic to the point where J.P. considers her hazardous to be around.
  • Noodle Incident: Ruby was once cautioned by the police following an incident with a goat.

    Catherine Bordey
Played by Élizabeth Bourgine

DS Camille Bordey's mother and the owner of "Catherine's Bar", a local hangout popular with locals and tourists alike. She is a solid source of emotional support for her daughter's fellow police officers.

In Series Six, she wins an election to become Honoré's mayor.

  • Glamorous Single Mother: She raised Camille on her own after her deadbeat husband abandoned the family. Although she struggled, she's managed to build a successful business and eventually made a serious run for mayor.
  • Lethal Chef/Supreme Chef: Depending on who is eating her cooking. Richard finds it unpalatable, Humphrey gobbles it up, while JP finds it to be too spicy to swallow.
  • Local Hangout: Her bar is where the Honoré police go to relax after a long day investigating murders.

    Commissioner Selwyn Patterson
Played by Don Warrington

Head of the Saint Marie police force, although he seems to spend a disproportionate amount of time focusing on the Honoré Police Department.
  • Officer and a Gentleman: He's able to get information from a crook (who'd previously chased Dwayne off with a vicious dog) by politely asking the crook's mother and having her beat the information out.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Much as he enjoys teasing his staff, he's firmly on their side.
  • Trickster Mentor: He loves messing with Poole and Goodman's heads.

Former Characters

Warning: Major spoilers for the first part of the series below.

     Detective Inspector Richard Poole
Played by Ben Miller
  • Agent Scully: Poole is determined to dismiss any hint of the mystical or supernatural, instead preferring to rely on scientific analysis and logic.
  • Awesomeness by Analysis: He relies heavily on science to solve crimes, which inevitably leads him to a Eureka Moment.
  • British Stuffiness: The stuffiest Briton who ever stuffed a shirt. He's outright appalled by expressions of affection or sentiment.
  • Bully Hunter: Having been on the receiving end of bullying himself, Poole is quite motivated to take any bully down a few pegs.
  • Character Death: Mysteriously stabbed with an ice pick at a party; the investigation of his death serves as the introductory case for DI Goodman.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Poole talks almost exclusively in sarcasm and put-downs, regardless of whether or not he likes the person he is speaking to.
  • Defective Detective: Averted. Poole is often uptight and sometimes has difficulty properly expressing his emotions, but overall is a nice, perfectly mature person simply trying to come to grips with his somewhat frustrating situation.
  • Eureka Moment: More or less his case-solving M.O. After all the science, that is!
  • Fish out of Water: He spends a lot of time on Saint Marie fumbling around in total ignorance of the local culture. When he first arrives, another officer has to explain to him that Guadeloupe is a completely different island from the one he's on.
  • The Finicky One: Poole at one point spreads his jacket out on a rock before sitting down. He also refuses to take his shoes off, even while walking on the beach.
  • Funny Foreigner: With his suits and uptight attitude, he sticks out like a sore thumb on the island and, at the very least, is considered to be odd by the locals.
  • Hilariously Abusive Childhood: His home life was so dysfunctional, he was relieved to be sent away to boarding school... where the House Mother terrorised and abused him day and night, leaving him with a crippling fear of nuns.
  • I Am Very British: Yes. Yes he is.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: In "Death in the Clinic", he overarm bowls a round float at Paul Vincent and nails him in the forehead after Dwayne gets dunked in the harbour. Lampshaded by him immediately afterward.
    Richard: I honestly didn't expect that to work.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He comes off very rude and abrasive to the officers of Saint Marie at first, but it's soon revealed to them that he's actually quite a nice person, and that he's simply a bit uptight and rough around the edges, a condition which is exacerbated by his Fish out of Water / Reassigned to Antarctica status.
  • Lack of Empathy: A heroic example - Poole is a dutiful servant of law and justice, but he needs a long run-up to understand others' emotions. His offers of condolences to grieving families sound like he's commenting on the weather, and it takes him a full episode to work up a proper expression of sympathy when Camille loses a friend.
  • Leitmotif: Has a character theme.
  • Limited Wardrobe: He almost exclusively wears a black suit, white shirt, and black tie.
  • Not So Above It All: Although he tends to remain somewhat aloof of his team's antics, he not infrequently gets on board, much to their delight.
  • Phone-In Detective: He spends one episode ill in bed - so he orders a whiteboard sent to his room, gets updates from Dwayne and Fidel, and solves it all from the sickroom. Of course, this might have been a bit easier for him if he wasn't sometimes delirious.
  • Politically Incorrect Hero: While a completely sympathetic character and generally a nice person, Richard is quick to degrade the French. He is initially prejudiced toward Catherine's restaurant based on its French appearance, and when Camille points out that she is half-French, he insists that "there's no such thing as half-French!" Getting to know and trust Catherine, Camille, and Fidel, all characters with French backgrounds, is part of his Character Development.
  • Reassigned to Antarctica: He views his assignment to Saint Marie as this, and furiously tries to get out of it. It doesn't work, and he eventually adjusts and even begins to enjoy some aspects of his new life.
  • Science Hero: He often displays what appears to be an extensive knowledge of chemistry, and puts it to good use with forensic methods his team is sometimes completely unfamiliar with.
  • Servile Snarker: Poole hates Commissioner Patterson and resents his involvement in his cases, but can rarely bring himself to say so outright, so he expressed his frustration through snarky requests and reports.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: Played with. He wears nice dark suits that would probably look great at a Croydon station - on the steaming island of Saint Marie where he's sweating and constantly complaining about the heat... eh, not so much.
  • Ship Tease: With Camille.
  • Spot of Tea: He spends one of his first episodes combing the island in desperate search of one, even skipping out on work to do it! In another episode he immediately recognises the tea belonging to the victim as being "the most expensive tea in the world," which he promptly confiscates as, erm, evidence.
  • The Summation: How he leads up to The Reveal. He even scripts them, and gives the other officers cues to present evidence for maximum dramatic impact.
  • Super OCD: Don't mess with his dry erase board, and don't press too hard on the tips of new markers.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: He has a potent snake phobia, which becomes a plot point when dealing with a snake-fancying suspect.
     Detective Inspector Humphrey Goodman
Played by Kris Marshall
  • Adorkable: Clumsy and geeky, but also friendly and empathetic towards others.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: He stumbles with his words and is constantly getting himself in trouble but he's also able to solve murders that perplex everybody else on the island.
  • Big Eater: Humph's slender figure belies an epic love of food. He snacks on biscuits through case deliberations, wards off hangovers with an extra-large full English breakfast, and serves his favourite recipes to the rest of the team. When served Catherine's special chicken stew, he can't hold himself back long enough to get a bowl and just starts eating it from the pot.
  • Couldn't Find a Pen: Inverted. He usually has a pen, but never actually brings a notebook with him. He just writes on any scrap of paper he can find lying around or in his pockets, such as receipts, menus, sweet wrappers, his own hand, etc. In one episode, he even buys postcards at a gift shop just so he has something to take notes.
  • Defective Detective: Downplayed. He's clumsy and awkward and says police work is the only thing he's good at, but he's just a little odd rather than outright defective.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Humphrey has "Humpty Dumpty" because when he was a chubby child, he once fell off a wall and injured his head.
  • Establishing Character Moment: He arrives at the police station, struggling with his luggage and dropping his newspaper into a puddle, makes nervous small talk with the team... and then, sensing that it would be upsetting for him to immediately claim Richard's vacant desk, sits himself down at an unused one.
  • Eureka Moment: Following in Poole's footsteps.
  • Fish out of Water: Of a different sort to Poole: He's also in a totally different land to the one he's used to, but he at least tries to adjust, and gradually improves.
  • Happily Married: Both he and the audience think this until the end of his debut episode...
  • The Klutz: Although perfectly competent at solving crimes, Goodman is constantly knocking over potted plants, trying to lean on wheeled tables, and losing his poise in the middle of a summation due to his own clumsiness. In his very first episode, he fell out of a window. He always seems to bounce back from the damage to his dignity, however, and simply continues on with whatever he was doing.
  • Nice Guy: Humphrey is a kind-hearted soul who looks out for his colleagues and tries to remain optimistic in the most dire situations.
  • Put on a Bus: He decides to return to England to build a new life with Martha, his second love.
  • Supreme Chef: He is a talented cook and his coworkers love what he makes. When he remembers to turn on his oven, that is.
  • The Un-Favourite: Goodman at one point describes his childhood as being the youngest and the one the joke was always on, though he never really understood what the joke was in the first place. It's strongly hinted that his parents and siblings didn't have much time for him.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Due to his father not thinking much of his police career. In fact, his father actively tries to sabotage his career during a visit in Saint Marie.
  • Wild Man: At least, compared to Poole. He is more unkempt, does much more sniffing of clues, etc.
     Detective Sergeant Camille Bordey
Played by Sara Martins
  • Action Girl: She's been a Detective Sergeant for over two years, been shot twice, and is almost certain she can beat Richard in a fist fight. And if you think you don't have to listen to murder allegations, you're wrong; you do; sit back down.
  • Disappeared Dad: Raised by her mother, Catherine. We finally discover why this was and meet her father in series 3.
  • Hot-Blooded: In contrast to Poole's more emotionally reserved persona. Goodman calls her "fiery" in series 3, and hurries to get in the jeep before she leaves without him.
  • Number Two: The second most senior officer after the D.I. Dwayne and Fidel take orders from and report to her if the D.I.'s not currently around.
  • Put on a Bus: In her departing episode, Camille is last seen on a ferry to the mainland, on her way to a new career in Paris.
  • Ship Tease: With Poole, and later with Humphrey.
     Sergeant Fidel Best
Played by Gary Carr
  • Action Dad: His wife is pregnant during the first series and, as the youngest member of the team, he is the go-to guy for chasing criminals and other active pursuits.
  • Donut Mess with a Cop: He regrets not taking doughnuts on a stakeout.
  • Happily Married: To his wife, Juliet.
  • Helping Granny Cross the Street: One of Fidel's first scenes has him actually helping an old lady cross the road. Dwayne, meanwhile, is chatting up a wealthy tourist.
  • Odd Friendship: He had one with the local gigolo, but broke it off when he decided to become a cop, since he felt it was awkward. He regrets that.
  • Phrase Catcher: Everyone tells Fidel he needs to learn to relax. Dwayne, Juliet... even the criminals he arrests tell him he needs to relax.
  • Put on a Bus: He is explained to be working on another island at the start of series 4.
  • Those Two Guys: With Dwayne.
     Officer Dwayne Myers
Played by Danny John-Jules
  • Big Brother Instinct: He throws himself between JP and a pipe wielding criminal and is badly hurt in the process. He explains to JP that he has a lax style of policing but that doesn't mean that he doesn't care about the job or his colleagues any less.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: He's a highly experienced and competent crime-solver but has no ambition to be anything other than a beat cop (contrasted in the first few seasons with the younger, more driven Fidel, who makes sergeant eventually).
  • The Casanova: The series is littered with appearances and references to his numerous old flames. His reactions to them vary between friendly, flirty, and finished. One girl keeps trying to get back together with him, and he insists that "they were never an item."
  • Disappeared Dad: His father walked out on the family when he was a child and they didn't have contact for at least 50 years before meeting by accident in London.
  • It's Personal: When his mentor Cedrik dies under mysterious circumstances, he gets very heavily involved into the investigation of a possible murder after a Dying Clue sent via cell phone during the burning tips him off.
  • Odd Couple: With J.P. This is particularly emphasised in the final episode of series 4, when Dwayne insists his more relaxed methods are just as effective as J.P.'s more uptight, rule-abiding methods.
  • Old-Fashioned Copper: His style of policing involves being chummy with Saint Marie's lower-level criminals and letting them go about their business in exchange for information on bigger targets. Unlike other examples, he isn't prone to violence although he likes to talk a big game.
  • Put on a Bus: At the start of series 8, Dwayne is said to be travelling with his father.
  • Shipper on Deck: He is a vocal supporter of his colleagues' various attempts at finding romance on the island.
  • Those Two Guys: With Fidel and later J.P.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Dwayne has a fear of the dark and confined spaces.
  • Your Cheating Heart: He enjoys playing the field, and this has left a trail of very angry women in his wake. JP once sussed out that one of Dwayne's former girlfriends now completely despises him because Dwayne slept with a good chunk of her family at the same time they were dating. From Dwayne's reaction, he didn't even seem to be aware that two of the women were related to her.
     Detective Sergeant Florence Cassell
Played by Joséphine Jobert
  • Action Girl: After a suspect tried to escape by boat, Florence was the only one who ran at the harbour and managed to leap onto the roof of another boat in order to reach the one she needed.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Early in the first episode of series 4, Dwayne talks to her at a bar, and tells her about his frustrations with the Chief Commissioner. At the end of the same episode, she is officially inducted into the team. Cue the look of horror on Dwayne's face.
  • Cloud Cuckoolanders Minder: She takes a more proactive approach to dealing with Humphrey's idiosyncracies than Camille did. She does not let him ramble to himself without explaining himself to the team.
  • It Is Pronounced "Tro-PAY": Her name is pronounced in the French manner, with the emphasis on the second syllable. DI Jack Mooney is notable for being the only one who puts the emphasis on the first syllable like a native English speaker.
  • Number Two: Easily steps into this position after Camille's departure.
  • Put on a Bus: After the death of her fiancé Patrice, Florence decides to take a break from being a detective and stay with family in Guadalupe to recuperate from her loss.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: